multipurposegoddess: (Default)
I guess I have been busy. I know I frequently think about things I would like to write about but don't quite come up with the down time to think them through much less actually write something to go here.

Anyway, as much navel-gazing as I have to catch y'all up on, today I am posting about my newly deceased uncle, Vsevolod, or, as I have always known him, Svetik. I guess he went by "Steve" out in the world, but I never heard him called that. He was born in Shanghai during the Japanese occupation and Babushka had a hard time getting enough nutrition, etc., while she was pregnant, which probably didn't do him any favors. And my grandfather had some peculiar ideas about child raising that led him to be too demanding of my dad and barely take an interest in Svetik, so the family dynamics were, to put it bluntly, pretty fucked up. He and my dad never got along, as kids or as adults, though the last time they spent together was mostly talking monster movies and was pretty pleasant.

He was a hard guy to be around - loud and ignorant - but essentially well-meaning and genial.

I can't say I'll miss him, particularly, he was never a big presence in my life, but, y'know, one less Skaredoff in the world, and there were never a lot of us.

The memorial service tomorrow night and the funeral proper on Tuesday will be Russian Orthodox, which will be weird for me. I'm not sure how to dress - I thought I had it nailed with my grey suit, but now I'm thinking maybe pants would be frowned upon. I'm sure I have something suitable.

Edited to add: spoke to my dad and he says pants would be okay at this parish, but I need something to cover my head. I have a knit hat that I hope will do, I can't find any scarves. I think I will go with skirts anyway, I can't find my suit pants (why I have the jacket handy and not the pants I do not know, but I have been doing a lot of moving-clothing-around and may have packed them into the wrong box or something). I'll have to wear my memorial service clothes to work, I'll need to go straight to my parents and then leave immediately from there, and i think I'll stay the night so I'll pack my funeral clothes. Sorry, Walter and cast, but you can manage one night, you've done it before.

Dad spent yesterday clearing out Svetik's apartment, which actually helped him feel better. Less guilty. One of the ladies from the church was helping him - she thinks of Svetik as a Fool of God (my dad's translation) and will miss him. I think that might be an apt description. And I'm glad someone will miss him.
multipurposegoddess: (Penguin Cookie Jar)
Got over to my folks' house about noon, yesterday. Traffic was not a problem, though it looked awful going the other direction. Put together the Turkey Stew with Stuffing Dumplings, which turned out delicious. The stew is turkey, sweet potatoes, chicken stock, and some herbs and spices, basically. Delicious. And the dumplings are leftover stuffing bound together with a little egg and flour, simmered in water and then simmered in the stew. So good. My mostly vegetarian parents liked it, too.

The Cranberry Pudding we put together using olive oil instead of butter and egg replacer instead of eggs and that didn't work great. It was still pretty delicious (a molasses-y batter and cranberries is not a combination I would have thought to our together, but it turned out very tasty!), but didn't hold together when it came time to unmold.

Mom roasted brussel sprouts with walnuts and garlic, and butternut squash, and made a beet and orange salad. Altogetehr not our typical Thanksgiving Day spread, but a festive one, and we were all pleasantly full to watch football and Punkin Chunkin - we flipped over during the lull between the Dallas game and the 49ers and soon found ourselves rooting for particular teams/events (the guys who measure how far the pumpkins have flown are our favorites, I think)

I left the pudding leftovers with mom and dad, and there was no pumpkin pie, and I am missing having dessert for breakfast today. I have sufficient ingredients for pumpkin pie, but I am feeling very lazy. To wit, I am out of coffee and dry cat food, so I am getting by with instant for me and dog food for the cats (I will give them surprise extra gushy food in a little while to appease them) so that I can stay by the fire in my robe and slippers rather than getting dressed and leaving the house. I really want to spend most of today curling up and reading and I think I can make that a reality. 
multipurposegoddess: (Fire)
 It's been a sort of busy few days. It's a lot of words for a couple of days )

Indulging my laziness today. I may do some laundry, but so far I've really done nothing, and it's nice.


multipurposegoddess: (Default)
What was happening with me yesterday? Oh, right:

  • 12:54 I continue to suck at grocery shopping. I take two hours to get ten things and then come home and cry because some of those things are WRONG

  • Totally sapped my energy. It's possibly the stupidest and most frustrating manifestation of my ADD, and, of course, the most consistent. I hope the new shopping list application I got for my phone will help a little - it can track what aisle things are in so maybe when I'm going for just a few things I can go right to them rather than wandering about unable to find them...

  • 12:55 But I am doing GREAT at celebrating Nat'l Hamburger Month. And Nat'l Bike Month.

  • Though I failed to ride my bike at all yesterday. Meant to do it in the afternoon but it got too hot and I was exhausted from the grocery store. Sigh. If I go today it will be by myself, which is always a little harder than going with DH, but I hope I will manage.

    Ate the last of the burgers that DH grilled up for us yesterday at lunch, so probably no more burger eating for a while. very pleased with how the buns turned out!

  • 15:14 Dumpling report: Mushroom-Asparagus Bread Dumplings in a Mushroom Sauce. Dough is in fridge, blanching asparagus.
  • 15:15 Not looking forward to the "steam fir an hour" portion of the recipe...

  • Close to a sauna recipe! Probably nice in December/January...

  • 15:20 Not looking forward to the "steam for an hour" portion of the recipe...{stupid autocorrect}

  • Was not actually so bad. I didn't have to stay in the kitchen, for one thing.
  • 15:56 Taking my mom! RT Lady of #Suisun offers great Delta brunch cruise for Mother's Day. (via @SuisunCity)

  • Really looking forward to that. It's the same paddlewheel boat that DH and I took the Valentine's Day cruise on, probably the same route down the slough, I'm pretty sure mom and dad will enjoy it.

  • 20:39 The house declares tonight's dumplings delicious. Yay.

  • I suspect I will like the "slice and fry in butter" version of the leftovers even better!

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multipurposegoddess: (Penguin Mountain)
So we had our regular relationship therapy session yesterday. I spent the whole time feeling like we were talking about nothing - we were, in fact, talking about hypothetical situations and I just don't really see the point of, for example, examining what DH's motivation might be for making a decision that he has not, in fact, made. We're just making stuff up at that point, as far as I care. But, whatever, he got some kind of insight from it, it seemed like. After half an hour or so, our therapist asked me what I thought and I said I didn't see why we were spending so much time on this issue, and she said a bunch of stuff about the addictive mind that I, yes, already know, and went on to misinterpret my spiritual practices. I corrected her on that, at least. And then when we were leaving, she said it was a good session, which leaves me bewildered, because it really seemed like a waste of time to me. I could have sat in the waiting room and crocheted while they talked and gotten as much out of it.
multipurposegoddess: (Default)
Cut-tags, nothing but cut-tags!

Read more... )

Which is why I wasn't posting, I guess. I was busy. But good!busy.

The future )
multipurposegoddess: (Penguin Cookie Jar)
Had a lovely day yesterday. Spent the morning puttering around the house, including steam mopping the bathroom which is always hugely satisfying (the floor gets so clean, and there's no bucket to deal with! Makes me happy). My folks came over after lunch so we could go to the outlet sale at Meyers - they mostly do online and catalog sales, but their two warehouses are in Vallejo and right over here by me and they have warehouse sales annually, 30% off already discounted cookware, basically. Mom and Dad stumbled across the one in Vallejo over 10 years ago when they were coming back from a less than stellar visit to Babushka's. They were both ind of grumpy and didn't feel like going straight home, so when they saw the huge sale banner, they went to check it out. The salespeople and everyone else shopping were very friendly and they got some great deals and they've gone back every year ever since. It's always a good source of Xmas presents, and a good way to get the latest Anonlon nonstick whatevers, which since they cook using virtually no oil is vey useful for them.

Since I moved back to California, I've been going with them, and since I moved to Suisun we've been going to the warehouse over here and then out to dinner. Got myself a dutch oven that I don't strictly need but that will work on the induction cooker, a set of three cast iron frying pans that were extremely cheap, a muffin pan that I actually need, and a set of hot chocolate mugs shaped like penguins with a battery powered mixer and little hat like things that keep the hot chocolate from splashing out while you're mixing it up but you can pop off to drink direct from the mug. Mostly because they are penguins and they are cute, but also because my hot chocolate mixing technique with a tiny whisk and a measuring cup is not great, so why not try this?

Yesterday was also the big day of Christmas at the Waterfront - merchant stalls, an "ice" skating rink (ice skates on some sort of plastic surface) in the plaza, the lit up boat parade, lighting the city Xmas tree, fireworks and I think a bonfire. The merchants and skating will be there next weekend, too. I always enjoy the boat parade, it's just fun. Got some Sutter Buttes Meyer Lemon Olive Oil and Peach Balsamic Vinegar because they had set up a little tasting bar and OMG SO DELICIOUS. I could drink that vinegar. Or use it as a salad dressing with no oil, that's probably more practical. And the lemon olive oil is, mm, so good. t will be drizzled on many things, I'm sure.

There's a fundraiser thing where various groups put together fully decorated trees complete with packages under them that are auctioned off, with the money raised going to whatever cause the group designated. It's pretty neat, and the trees are pretty, so we browsed among those. It's pretty neat to be able to be among a couple dozen decorated trees at once. If I ever decide to have a tree, I'll get one of those, I think. Good causes, extra goodies, I think I could probably fit my few personal ornaments onto an already decorated tree.

After the parade we had a few more stalls to visit and as we wound up with that the fireworks started. Right over our heads. It was pretty sweet, I must say. In the summertime, fireworks don't start until 9:30, so I watch them from my porch, which is still pretty good, but being right under them was kind of incredible. And it wasn't super crowded, which I have always assumed it would be.

Then dinner at Main Street Bar and Grill, who have changed and simplified their menu a bit, but it was still absolutely delicious. For once I didn't get dessert. I have half a grilled pork loin special to munch on for lunch today, yum.

Got home between 7 and 8 and it felt like the middle of the night. I don't think I even got through a whole episode of anything on the DVR before I went to sleep. Did chat a bit with DH, who sounds like he is doing pretty well right now
multipurposegoddess: (Default)
What was happening with me yesterday? Oh, right:

  • 15:31 Dad came through second surgery great, NO PAIN, has to stay in hospital a few more days while his insides heal. Off to Gaia, soon. #fb
  • 18:31 Gaia is the awesome. Watching a swan from about 5 ft away right now. Just beyond the cherry tree. Already ate cherries.
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{Added on Monday}
Dad was doing great yesterday, but when they gave him actual food (liquid, but not straight into the bloodstream), the pain came back. But they want to send him home, soon. So, we'll see. He's back to IV only for now.

Saturday was 5 years for me and Henry being married. We went to this hotel for the night. What with one thing and another we didn't check in until 5, too late for massages and whatnot, but we strolled the grounds and watched the birds and had a lovely dinner at the restaurant. H had started feeling poorly on Friday and was ready to sleep right after dinner, but I made him wake up enough to watch Pushing Daisies. Still delightful. We each had a massage in the morning, which is a very pleasant way to start the day but makes it hard to do anything else afterwards, and then I spent some time with an esthetician (kinda weird, but pretty nice - the whole esthetician thing, not her specifically) while H napped some more. he ended up sleeping most of yesterday. But that's not the hotel's fault - we will definitely be back and I would recommend it heartily to anyone looking for that sort of thing.

Dad update

May. 29th, 2009 10:24 pm
multipurposegoddess: (Default)
They found a blockage in his small intestine and they're operating tomorrow morning - dad said they'll try another laproscopic procedure, which would be nice.

I didn't get over there to see him today - I went to get dressed and coudln't put together an out fit that I could leave the house in, so I started doing laundry and getting everything sorted and loads washed and by the time stuff was coming out of the dryer I still couldn't put an outfit together - bad planning on my part - and it was getting late. Talked to my mom at that point, she said that was maybe for the best because my dad feels like he should be in host mode even when he's lying in a hospital bed. And once they got the pain relieved, he was sleeping most of the time, anyway.

In fact, he fell asleep while she was there this evening, so she tiptoed out so as not to wake him, and shortly after she left they woke him up to tell him the plan for tomorrow. When he couldn't reach her at home, he called me, so I did get to talk to him a bit. He sounded groggy.

So, off to transcarquenesia in the morning - I have washed many loads of laundry and damn well better be able to get dressed. I also need to pack an overnight bag - tomorrow is my 5th wedding anniversary, Henry and I have reservations at Gaia , planning on getting massages and whatever else looks good at the spa.

So tired.
multipurposegoddess: (Default)
What was happening with me yesterday? Oh, right:

  • 08:24 Dad had to go to ER last night, getting gall bladder out today. #fb
  • 15:46 Gall bladder is gone, dad is already answering the phone, sounds like everything went well. Whew!
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Just got off the phone - dad is bored enough to get dressed so he can do laps around the hospital. He got tired of waiting for a second gown so he could keep his rear covered and just piut on the clothes he had on when he came in.

So, the full story, he and my mom had been hiking up at Pt. Reyes with a group they hike with regularly. They were gonna have to leave early, so they kind of hurried through the first bit so they could get back to the car in time to get to the next appointment, rested for a bit where they figured the rest of the group would catch them, though the rest of the group congregated a little ways away from them on the beach. So, dad headed over to tell them that he and mom were heading home so they wouldn't, and the group started moving away from him so he had to run to catch up and then they had to hurry back to the car and he started feeling bad and cramping up a little, so he ended up postponing the meeting he was trying to get to.

He said it felt very much like when he had kidney stones a while back, so he figured he'd drink a lot of water to try to flush 'em out. That didn't work, and he 2am he was throwing up all the water he'd been drinking and the waves of pain had become one long continuous bout of pain, so mom took him to the ER where they decided his gall bladder was full of sludge. At first they gave him a bunch pain meds and told him he could go home when they worked ,but the pain wasn't lessening and the consensus was that he'd probably have another attack in a few days anyway, so they took the gall bladder out.

Waiting to find out of he can go home, now. He fully expects to.
multipurposegoddess: (Default)
My mom is 65 today.

She's a pretty awesome mom. She's also just a nifty person to know. I could go on and on for days and not begin to scratch the surface of how great she is.

Just a small example: mom has always taken dance classes for exercise, but never performed. She doesn't like being the center of attention. Walking me down the aisle when I got married was kind of an ordeal for me, but she did it without complaint because it was important to me.

She's been taking tap from the same teacher for a few years now, and that teacher is involved in a performance troupe. Every class they learn a routine. This spring, they learned two routines that would be part of a sort of variety show/revue/sketch comedy thing. Mom was not into this idea, but learned the dances and got her costumes and, when it came time to perform, even let me and my dad come watch the show. It was a lot of fun, both the show and seeing my shrinking violet (in public and with strangers, when she's with people she knows, nsm) mother tapping up a storm to "It's Raining Men. I'm so proud of her for doing something she wasn't really comfortable doing, and doing it well and enjoying it.

Rock on, Mom!

We're going to see The Mousetrap (Agatha Christie's super secret never published long running mystery) tonight.
multipurposegoddess: (Default)

My dad and I spend a good piece of yesterday measuring the remainder of the house's altitude deviations, which was fun. He then crawled under the house, and I poked my head into the crawlspace, so we could check out exactly what we would need to do to shim up the piers. It's been done in the past, sometimes in ways he couldn't really figure out the point of. Ultimately, we decided that it's more effort than we want to put into it. There's no big structural problems, it's just the accumulated shifting of 50 years on clay with maybe some occasional seismic activity. Once I make the topographic map of the house (I think that's right, topography describes topology, right?) it'll be fairly easy for me to check and make sure that it's not getting significantly worse quickly. And in a few years, savings or a home equity loan will cover the real repair. Or we'll move.

So, cross "fix foundation" off of To Do list. Now there's nothing in the way of me getting on with stripping wallpaper and spackling and figuring out exactly what to do about that crack in the ceiling except my innate laziness and procrastination.

ION, my husband has discovered emotions. That is, that he has them, like, all the time, not just in response to Big Events. And he's only a little afraid of that, he's mostly pretty psyched to, to be all Californian about it, get in touch with himself and explore his inner life. We had a really good conversation this morning and it is seeming more and more like that light at the end of the tunnel really is light, you know?

Also, I have discovered that diluted unsweetened cranberry juice is pretty tasty. Which is great, because finding sweetened that is not full of corn syrup or just plain too sweet is hard, and full strength unsweetened is more than I can really stomach. I can partake of the therapeutic power of the cranberry, huzzah!

Good day.
multipurposegoddess: (Default)
Everything is just sort of continuing apace, no dramatic developments on any front. We have asked for a Repair Credit from the bank that's selling the house and received a bit, so that's nice. Still waiting on loan approval for whatever reason.

My sister and her family will be in town this Saturday, for about a week. I'm trying to get the house clean enough to at least have them visit, though I don't know that I'll be able to manage making it habitable for overnight. My parents' house is in complete disarray, so they won't be staying there. Mom has said she might just put them up in a hotel room. The kids will be attending the camp at John Muir's house, I don't know what kind of plans my sister and her husband have. We are hoping to be able to figure something out business plan-wise for their theater, but when we'll do that and how much time it will take I have no idea. So I'm just trying to keep next week open as much as I can. It seems like I have a lot of scheduling to work out after that, but I can't wrap my head around it. It starts with "Assuming we close on the house" and I kind of stall out there and can't get any further.

On our way up to Suisun to meet with our prospective insurance agent on Saturday, we passed a horse trailer, as you often do in these parts. Henry was driving, so I peered in to see what the horse looked like and saw stripes. We were alongside long enough to confirm that it was a zebra! No clue what it was doing traveling east on the I-80.


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